France’s Right Notches Massive Wins In Key Elections Against Macron’s Liberal Wing

(Photo by FRANCOIS LO PRESTI/AFP via Getty Images)

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Jake Smith Contributor
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France’s premier right-wing party won massively in the country’s first round of snap elections on Sunday, delivering a blow to President Emmanuel Macron’s liberal coalition.

The right-wing National Rally party won 33% of the votes in the parliamentary elections across France on Sunday, leaving Macron’s Renaissance party with only 21% of the votes, according to The Wall Street Journal. Though the elections won’t be finished until later this week, the National Rally’s initial win signals a major shift in the French population’s political priorities and a departure from Macron’s policies. (RELATED: ‘We’re Ready For It’: Conservatives Set To Secure Wins In Europe After Massive EU Elections)

The second round of voting will take place on July 7th. If the National Rally party wins more than 289 seats — the number required to take the absolute majority in parliament — and shoves Macron’s Renaissance party out, it would significantly hamper Macron’s ability to wield power and give the National Party a major say in the country’s legislative decisions; Macron would also be forced to appoint the party’s choice for prime minister.

“Democracy has spoken and the French have put the he (National Rally) and its allies at the top, practically wiping out the Macron camp,” Marine Le Pen, leader of the National Rally, told her supporters after the first round ended on Sunday, according to multiple reports.

(Photo by FRANCOIS LO PRESTI/AFP via Getty Images)

Former president of the French far-right Rassemblement National (RN) parliamentary group Marine Le Pen gives a speech during the results evening of the first round of the parliamentary elections in Henin-Beaumont, northern France, on June 30, 2024. (Photo by FRANCOIS LO PRESTI/AFP via Getty Images)

Voter turnout was at a decades-level high this weekend, with a 67% participation rate compared to the 47.5% participation rate in 2022, per The New York Times. Final votes are still being tallied, but the National Rally is projected to win somewhere between 255 and 295 seats in the 557-seat legislative body, while Macron’s party is expected to win 90 to 125 seats, according to the WSJ.

Other left-wing and green parties did similarly poorly compared to the National Rally, but Macron’s party lost the biggest margin of votes.

Macron called for the sudden snap elections after his party was delivered a previous defeat in a separate round of European Union parliamentary elections in early June, hoping to provide an opportunity for voters to throw their support behind his party.

Officials inside the Biden administration are reportedly concerned that Macron’s party is set to lose power in this week’s elections, as President Joe Biden and Macron share similar views on policy, officials familiar with discussions previously told Politico. Biden officials were reportedly puzzled that Macron called for snap elections and risked losing the vote as his party had shown signs of losing political favor.

That round of voting will be “one of the most decisive in the history of the Fifth Republic,” Jordan Bardella, a leader in the National Rally and Le Pen’s pick for the country’s next prime minister said on Sunday, according to the WSJ.

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